RANGERS defender Rob Kiernan has admitted that Hibernian’s 2-1 victory in the meeting between the clubs at Easter Road means that the Edinburgh club are now genuine contenders to win the Championship.
It was the first league defeat of the current campaign for Mark Warburton’s side, who still enjoy the comfort of a five-point cushion at the top of the table.
They will also expect to return to winning ways today at home to bottom club Alloa, who have harvested just two points from their last seven fixtures.
“Of course we’re in a title race but we’re going to do everything we can to make sure that we’re the ones who’ll come out on top at the end of the season,” said Kiernan.
“There was no reason for us to feel disappointed because we played some good stuff but it was their day so we go again. I’ve got to show respect to every team in this league but there’s a race there and someone has got to win it. That’s our objective.”
The 24-year-old has been around the block often enough (Rangers are his 12th club in five years) to realise that one defeat does not represent a sea change in Rangers’ fortunes.
“We’re still a very good team with very good players,” added Kiernan. “We’ll just carry on doing what we’re doing. Every game has a different challenge and they’re all hard. Teams use all sorts of different formations against us to try and break us down and do damage to us.
“So it’s going to be a hard season but we’ve known that from the start. There was disappointment at Easter Road but that’s football. We’ve dusted ourselves down and trained well. Everything has been exactly the same as every other week – we’ve done our analysis and it was just another game for us.
“All we need to do is look at our first 11 games and how we did then. There’s no reason why we can’t do that again – we have the quality here to do that, without a doubt.”